Tips On How To Get Your Dog To Take Its Medicine

Dog Taking MedicineLike kids, dogs don’t eagerly take their medication. But there are ways to get the job done without too much stress and fuss. Give these tips a try if you are having trouble medicating your dog.

1. The Old Meatball Trick (or whatever food turns your dog on.) If the medication can be given with food, simply stuff the pill, tablet or capsule inside a tasty morsel. Make sure, though, he doesn’t spit out the medication.

2. Pet Piller.These plastic devices look like a syringe (without the needle) and place pills on the back of your dog’s tongue. A new pilling device on the market encourages swallowing by squirting water and the pill into your dog’s mouth.

3. Compounding Pharmacies. These companies add tasty flavors to icky medication, or turn them into more palatable forms, such as chewable tabs or liquids.  Even multiple prescriptions for the same condition can be combined. Ask your veterinarian for advice, though, because some drugs can not be safely altered or combined.

4. Positive Reinforcement. If your dog takes medicine very regularly you can eventually “train” them to take their medication. After your dog receives the medicine reward him with a special treat. Over time your dog will associate the reward with taking the medication. This makes it a bit easier for you compared to #1 where you actually have to stuff the medicine in the treat. Besides that doesn’t really work when the medicine is not the sort that is ingested.

5. The Basics. If none of the above works, you’ll have to pill your dog. Here’s how: With one hand, tilt your dog’s head back and squeeze behind his canine teeth to open his mouth.  With the other hand, quickly place the medication on the back of his tongue. Then gently (and briefly) hold his muzzle shut to encourage swallowing. Follow with a tasty treat. After a bit of practice you will master the technique.